Stephen Hawking

English theoretical physicist, cosmologist, and author.

By Megan sottiaux and Cameron Rostami

Early Life

Born on the 8th of January 1942 in Oxford, England. He had 3 siblings, two sisters and an adopted brother. He didn't excel initially at academics. Eventually he went to Oxford University at the age of 17.

Discoveries and Challenges

In 1970, Hawking discovered the second law of black hole dynamics, which states that the event horizon of a black hole can never get smaller. In 1974 he discovered that black holes emit radiation. This would later go on to be called Hawking Radiation. In 1983 with collaborations from Jim Hartle, they published a model known as the Hartle-Hawking state. This stated that before the Big Bang, time did not exist and thus the idea of the existence of the beginning of the universe is meaningless. He put a summary of his work into a book called A Brief History of Time. Throughout the entirety of his research, Hawking's health was getting worse. In 1963, he was diagnosed with ALS (Lou Gehrig's Disease) By the late 70s his speech had deteriorated to the point he could only be understood by his family and close friends. As a result of the pneumonia he got in 1985, he was forced to get a tracheotomy, which removed what remained of his speech. He was eventually confined to a wheelchair. Hawking's marriage was strained due to his agnostic beliefs. He challenged the existence of a god in the Hartle-Hawking state.

Interesting Facts

1. Hawking has not yet been awarded a Nobel Prize

2. Hawking was born on the 300th anniversary of Galileo's death.

3. When he was 9, his grades were some of the worst in his class.

4. He was on the rowing team at his school

5. When he was diagnosed with ALS, he was given 2 years to live.

"I have noticed even people who claim everything is predestined, and that we can do nothing to change it, look before they cross the road"